“Kingsman: The Secret Service” is 2015’s first memorable, enjoyable film.
Based on a popular comic, the film may sound like a title with a wink-wink demeanor, and it plays itself that way for most of its running time. Not to mention it has some of the most off-the-wall action and tongue-in-cheek humor I’ve seen in a long while. And that’s saying something.
Colin Firth stars as Harry Hart of the Kingsmen, a series of international spies in England who are recruiting a new generation to follow in their footsteps. Hart and Kingsmen leader Arthur (Michael Caine) try to bring a troubled young man named Eggsy (Taron Egerton) into the fold.
Eggsy undergoes that typical movie training along with other recruits to test their intelligence and their abilities. Some tests may have to deal with teamwork; others may have to do with whether or not Eggsy can shoot his pug in the head.
Samuel L. Jackson stars as the villainous Valentine, who wants to rule the world by inventing a device that makes everyone go psycho and turn on each other.
Director Matthew Vaughan really loves upping the ante, especially in the violence department, and “Kingsman: The Secret Service” features one utterly outrageous action sequence after another, complete with enough irony, wit and imagination to make Quentin Tarantino jealous.
Firth, Caine and Jackson deliver performances that are mostly winking at the camera during certain moments, but they play it straight at the same time.
“Kingsman: The Secret Service” is much more clever and funny than it should be, and I hope that it’ll be the first of a series of movies.
Rated R for strong violence, language, and some sexual content.
Hall is a syndicated columnist in South Georgia.